This was a rough one. Looking at it on the outside it looked pretty decent but once I took a peak on the inside I realized I was in for a challenge. There were times I didn’t think this one was going to see life again but that only made me work a little harder at saving it…
The metal parts of this plane were badly rusted. Possibly the worst I have seen personally. However it had a couple good things going for it. One good this was it was complete. All the parts and pieces were there and for the most part didn’t look damaged besides the rust… Another positive is the wood base was in rather good shape. I have restored about 6 other trans wood bottom planes and usually the wood has a lot of dents, paint splats and dirt covering it. This one was either sanded down long ago or it just was not used all that much. The wood was a grey color from age but it only took me a few min of sanding and it looked new again. That was nice because it gave me more time to work on the metal..
Here is what I had to work with..
The breaker was rusted solid to the iron.. The cap screw would not budge so I had to soak it with WD40 for a while before I was able to break it loose. The other big issue was the brass adjustment wheel. The screw that it turns on was so rusted that some of the threads rusted away making it impossible to remove the brass wheel without damaging it. I soaked that in WD40 and cleaned the threads with a wire brush. I managed to get the brass wheel to turn just far enough on the threads to still have it usable. Of coarse in time as the iron shortens it will no longer work as the wheel can only be backed up so far. I wont be using the plane enough for me to have to ever worry about it though.
All the metal parts were soaked over night in EvapoRust. As they soaked the wood part of the plane was finished with a few coats of Shellac.
The EvapoRust worked great. Best product ever for rust. The EvapoRust took care of most of the rust and the rest I took off with wire brush and sand paper… Once I could see the iron I realized this is now probably my oldest plane. The iron is a very early type and its the first time I have got a plane with that type iron.
I had to lap the back of the iron for a while to get through all the pitting and get it flat. That took me a few hours. I just waxed all the metal parts and put it back together. After a little while I got it all adjusted and the plane works great.
I really like the size of this plane.. I don’t really use any of my wood bottom planes because they are very tricky to adjust and get to cut right… This one however seems to work pretty well and its very comfortable to hold in one hand. Its almost like a big block plane.
-- Dan - "Collector of Hand Planes"